So the first day of London Motor Show, now a long distant memory started with a bang, as I tripped over a chair, Shattering my dignity but happy to report the chair was not harmed in any form.
The first Stop of the day, after quickly glossing over the confused.com stand and walking over to the wonderfull people of Motor Village UK, where a small gem of a car, in form of Abarth 124 Spider, was on display.
The new 124 is basically the Mazda MX-5, which was a Fiat. As it stands the MX-5 is a very well balanced fun car to drive, and it would been rather easy for Abarth to go the other way.
However, we are delighted to say, that’s just not the case, and Abarth has even managed to improve and make it without a doubt, the best MX-5 on the road.
Unfortunately all that fine tuning and improvement comes at a cost, and in this case is the hefty eye-watering price tag of £29,565, which is around £6,000 more than the MX-5.
There are number of other minor issues, that to be perfectly honest should be really over looked, but as this is a car review, I have an obligation to mention.
The cabin feels a bit tight and drivers of slightly bigger than average size, would feel cramped. However, if you are taller than an average person, then you would get an amazing view down the long bonnet, which is a great trade off.
The last minor point, is boot space, a 140-litre boot well there isn’t much of it, but Let’s face it, you are not buying the 124 for its boot space.
So with the minor flaws covered, let’s get back on track and appreciate what makes Abarth 124 a delight.
The Abarth improves on every glance, the matt black bonnet and bootlid introduces as part of the Heritage Look pack and the 17-inch wheels is afar better fit than those on the regular Fiat.
Choose the correct option and you can add red centres for the standard leather sports seats, which goes very nicely with the stylised red towing eye and also matches, the bright red accents on the front splitter and wing mirror housings.
The 1.4-litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine fires up with a roar and as soon as your foot goes any where near the acceleration paddle, you are confronted by the beast’s aggressive growl. The Fiat’s 0-62mph time drops from 7.5sec (Fiat’s) to 6.8sec for the Abarth 124, while top speed is increased by 10mph to 144mph.
Running costs – MPG
Official combined economy is 44.1mpg, rising to 42.8mpg with the automatic transmission. The former figure is identical to that of the regular Fiat 124 Spider, so you lose nothing for your performance gains, and it’s a fraction better than the 40.9mpg claimed of the 2-litre MX-5.
|Top Speed||144 mph|
|0-60 mph||6.6 secs|
|Torque||250 Nm, 184 ft-lb|
|CO2 Emissions||148 g/km|
|Euro Emissions Standard||6|
|Miles Per Tank||435 miles|